GOOD DEED: Prada revealed in 2014 that it was going to help finance the restoration of Giorgio Vasari’s “Last Supper” in Florence and now the painting will be unveiled on Nov. 4 during an event in the presence of Italy’s president Sergio Mattarella. The painting, which was seriously damaged during the devastating flood that hit the Tuscan city in 1966, will be revealed during the ceremonies for the 50th anniversary of the flood, and returned to the Opera di Santa Croce, in the namesake basilica. Opera di Santa Croce is a private non-profit laical institution in charge of the administration of the monumental complex. Founded in the 14th century, it was recognized as a corporation in 1998.
The “Last Supper,” painted on five wooden panels by Vasari in 1546, had been seriously damaged by the river Arno waters and had been kept in storage for almost 40 years. It was originally created for the refectory of the convent of the “Murate [enclosed nuns].”
The works on the painting began in 2004 by the restoration laboratory of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, a Florence-based public institute controlled by the country’s Ministry for Cultural Affairs focused on the conservation and restoration of Italy’s artistic heritage.
This intervention follows the conservative one on the wooden panels conducted in 2010 by the Getty Foundation, the Getty Conservation Institute and the J. Paul Getty Museum.
Prada has collaborated with Fondo Ambiente Italiano, the Italian National Trust. This is the fifth initiative undertaken by Prada and FAI together. Previously, the Milanese fashion company financed two restorative interventions in the Apulia region in 2010 — the Antonio Vivarini’s polyptych of the Pinacoteca Provinciale di Bari and the well of the Abbazia di santa Maria di Cerrate, close to Lecce; it supported the restoration of the Sacello di San Prosdocimo in Padua’s Abbazia di Santa Giustina in 2012, while last year, in Bologna, it promoted the restoration of four large large chalk statues owned by the Accademia di Belle Arti, along with three arches of Palazzo dell’ Archiginnasio. In 2014, Prada and FAI donated a new curtain to the Regio Theater in Turin.